This fall, REI is launching the brand’s first complete lifestyle collection, the Wallace Lake collection, inspired by its co-founders, and designed to complement an outdoor lifestyle, said the company.
REI was founded by a community of climbing friends who made a life outside long before technical gear and apparel was available. The Wallace Lake collection is infused with that same wilderness spirit and evokes an outdoor way-of-life through a range of warm layering pieces featuring rich textures, bold graphics and classic patterns, said REI.
The collection includes shirt jackets, hoodies, vests, bomber jackets, pants, chunky sweaters, flannels and accessories. The series will continue with curated collections specific to future seasons.
“We know many people who come to the co-op want to find clothing that can be worn every day,” said Isabelle Portilla, Co-op Brands general manager for apparel. “This collection is stylish and comfortable and designed to wear after a hardcore outdoor adventure, or for a weekend with friends at a mountain cabin. It’s also something we will continue to build-upon and curate each season.”
For inspiration, REI’s in-house design team dug into the co-op’s archives and traveled to mountain towns. They took cues from nature, as well as classic products worn by the co-op’s earliest members.
“It’s been surreal being able to pull inspiration from the many incredible adventures in outdoor places that led to the foundation of the co-op,” said Karin DeYoung-Wood, REI Co-op Brands design lead. “For this line, we traveled to Wallace Lake, a place in Washington’s Cascade mountain range where we know our co-founders went on one of their first hikes together in 1929. We then combined today’s fashion trends with elements of nature we saw while we were there, as well as the technical design savvy REI’s design team is known for.”
To celebrate the co-op’s 80th anniversary and honor its co-founders, as part of this collection, the co-op is also releasing a limited-edition capsule collection of reproduced heritage classics. The collection includes a replica of REI’s 1972 High Country Parka for men, its 1978 Alpine Jacket for women and a redesigned rucksack, based on the original co-op staple that first hit stores in 1959. To round out the collection, REI also collaborated with Pendleton on a cozy camp blanket and Juniper Ridge on a collection of scented products that capture the essence of the Cascade Mountains.